A Big Island teen will represent the state at the 56th annual U.S. Senate Youth Program during Washington Week.
Maya Gee, a Kealakehe High School senior, will attend meetings and briefings “with senators, members of the House of Representatives, congressional staff, the president, a justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of Cabinet agencies, an ambassador to the U.S. and senior members of the national media,” according to a state Department of Education news release.
Washington Week is March 3-10.
“She will represent Hawaii well and we hope this opportunity inspires her to continue to use her voice to advocate for her fellow students and community,” DOE Superintendent Christina Kishimoto said in the release.
Students are selected based on their leadership abilities, commitment to volunteer work and rank academically in the top 1 percent of the state’s high school juniors and seniors.
Gee is one of 104 students in this year’s delegation. Each receives a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate study courtesy of The Hearst Foundation.
Gee also serves as the student member of the state Board of Education. She is the first Hawaii Island student selected to serve since 2001.
She’s also on the Hawaii State Student Council, part of Kealakehe’s National Honor Society, captain for the Model United Nations Club, is a member of the swim team and participates in leadership.
The U.S. Senate Youth Program was established in 1962 by U.S. Senate Resolution. It’s geared toward high school students interested in pursuing careers in public service.